Best Europe Tour Companies

Search 583 Europe tour operators and travel companies, with 20,735 reviews.

Top Travel Italy

Top Travel Italy

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Featured Europe Trips

50 Degrees North

50 Degrees North

All Europe Tour Companies

Europe tour companies range from global operators to local operators specializing in a particular country or region. Tours in Europe are often multi-country, and focus on a range of themes such as food & wine, outdoor activity, and culture. Find  the best  Europe tour operator for your style.

Costsaver

Poseidon Expeditions

Brendan Vacations

Brendan Vacations

Exodus Travels

Exodus Travels

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G Adventures

G Adventures

Intrepid Travel

Intrepid Travel

Insight Vacations

Insight Vacations

Luxury Gold

Luxury Gold

Collette

Greeking.me

Paris-Toujours

Paris-Toujours

Eros and Psyche Travel

Eros and Psyche Travel

Iberian Escapes

Iberian Escapes

CroisiEurope

CroisiEurope

Eskapas

Greece Insiders

583 match your criteria (1 - 20 shown)

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Europe Reviews & Ratings

Brilliant ... but.

I will deal with the 'but' first. This is definitely not a 1; leisurely; more a 2, moderate. The distances to walk are comparatively large and the surfaces (cobbl...

highlights of central europe

An excellent introduction to the countries visited. The tour leader, Peter, plying and explaining the flute. Very pleasant knowledgeable man, with a good sense of ...

HIGHLIGHTS OF CENTRAL EUROPE

This was our first trip with a group of people on a bus trip, and also the first with Exodus, and my husband and I had a really great holiday.The trip had a perfect ...

I was a bit worried about being too long on the bus but the timings were so well organised and during these bleak rainy days of winter I think about how happy I was ...

Had a fantastic holiday.  Well organised.  Good company. Saw beautiful cities and countryside and did so much in  two weeks thanks to Erik, our guide ...

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Europe Tours & Vacations

Three women laughing on a gondola in the canals of Venice, with the gondolier in the background

Enduring, eclectic, endlessly appealing – Europe is easy to explore and impossible to forget. 

Hike through rugged wilderness, tour 13th-century churches, and sip wine in the sun. In  Europe  you can do it all and do it well. It might be compact, but it is packed with diverse cultures, breathtaking landscapes, and delicious cuisines. They are all only a short flight or train ride away from each other. The walkable ruins of  Italy  will transport you back to when the Romans ruled an empire.  Sweden’s  indulgent national dishes will have your tastebuds begging for more. The natural beauty found in  Scotland  is guaranteed to ignite the mythical side of your imagination. And that’s only the beginning. From the breezy Mediterranean to the chilly Baltics, our European tours have something for every traveler.

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Europe travel faqs, do i need a covid-19 vaccine to join an intrepid trip.

Trips from 1 January 2023 onwards

From 1 January 2023, Intrepid will no longer require travelers to provide proof of vaccination against COVID-19 (excluding all Polar trips and select adventure cruises).

However, we continue to strongly recommend that all Intrepid travelers and leaders get vaccinated to protect themselves and others.

Specific proof of testing or vaccination may still be required by your destination or airline. Please ensure you check travel and entry requirements carefully.

Do you need a visa to travel to Europe?

Whether or not you need a visa to travel to European countries largely depends on the nationality on your passport and whether the country you're traveling to is part of the Schengen Agreement.

This agreement sees 26 European countries offer visa-free travel to nationals from 60 other countries including Australia, the United States, Canada, Japan, and the United Kingdom. 

To determine whether the country you're traveling to requires a visa, head to the   Schengen Visa's information website.  

What is the internet access like in Europe?

You can easily access the internet in most countries in Europe, generally in capital cities and other major towns. Internet access may be limited in regional locations such as national parks or remote villages in some countries. 

Can I use my cell phone in Europe?

You shouldn't have a problem using your cell phone while traveling throughout Europe, however, your international data roaming will need to be activated in order to connect to the internet or send messages (unless you connect to the local wi-fi). 

What are the toilets like in Europe?

Modern, flushable toilets are the standard in the majority of European countries. 

Can I drink the water in Europe?

Tap water in most European countries is considered safe to drink unless it is otherwise marked. 

When should I book a tour in Europe?

There is no 'best time' to travel around Europe as most countries offer plenty to do in every season of the year.

T he most popular time to travel to countries like Greece, Italy, and Croatia is during the summer months (June, July, and August) so you can make the most of each country's respective beaches and warm weather.

C ountries such as Iceland, Norway, and Sweden are known for their snowy landscapes and northern lights sightings during Winter (December, January, and February).

How much does a Europe tour cost?

A tour in Europe can vary depending on the countries you want to visit, the style of tour, and how long you want to go for but you can expect to pay anywhere between USD$1,000 to USD$5,000, with most tours around USD$2,500. 

Is tipping common in Europe?

Tipping isn't as prevalent in Europe as it is in some other countries and definitely isn't expected, but if you like the quality of service you've been given at hotels, restaurants etc then a tip is always appreciated. 

Are credit cards widely accepted in Europe?

While credit cards are accepted in all European countries (especially in capital cities and other larger cities), smaller cafes or local run businesses may not have EFTPOS machines so it's always best to carry around a little cash to cover these expenses. 

What is ATM access like in Europe?

You should have no problem finding ATMs in most European cities. 

What currency will I need on a Europe tour?

The official currency of Europe is the Euro (€), however, only 19 of the 28 countries in the European Union use this. Countries that still use their own currency include Norway, Switzerland, Belarus, Croatia, Denmark, and Sweden. 

Is Europe safe for LGBTQIA+ travelers?

Europe is considered a reasonably safe continent for LGBTQIA+ travelers with plenty of countries openly accepting, welcoming, and embracing the community.

This is evident in large capital cities such as Paris, Berlin, Madrid, and Vienna.

Some countries still hold traditional religious beliefs such as Belarus and Poland so a degree of caution should be taken when travelling around cities and remote regions in those countries.

Will I need a socket adapter for Europe?

If you plan on traveling to multiple countries throughout Europe then purchasing an all-in-one, worldwide adapter is the safest way to go.

I f you don't want to do that, your safest bet is to buy an adapter that uses C or E/F-type plugs as most European countries recognize this. 

Do I need to purchase travel insurance before traveling?

Absolutely. All passengers traveling with Intrepid are required to purchase travel insurance before the start of their trip. Your travel insurance details will be recorded by your leader on the first day of the trip. Due to the varying nature, availability and cost of health care around the world, travel insurance is very much an essential and necessary part of every journey.

For more information on insurance, please go to: Travel Insurance

Are Intrepid trips accessible for travelers with disabilities?

We are committed to making travel widely  accessible , regardless of ability or disability. We do our best to help you see the world, regardless of physical or mental limitations. 

We are always happy to talk to travelers with disabilities and see if we can help guide them toward the most suitable itinerary for their needs and, where possible, make reasonable adjustments to our itineraries.

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Santorini, Greece

Experts in tailor-made vacations to Europe

Ancient cities and modern metropolises, cutting-edge cuisine and millennia-old vineyards, cultivated countryside and windswept mountaintops… Europe packs a wealth of cultures, landscapes and experiences into its compact borders. There are so many places to visit that it can be hard to choose where to go.

Our specialists have explored the continent from the burbling volcanic mud pools of Hverir, Iceland , to the glamorous restaurants on Hvar, Croatia, and can help you narrow down where to go and what to see on your trip. They’ll work with you to create an itinerary that reflects your personal interests. You might want to visit a vineyard in the Tuscan hills, hike along the Slieve League cliffs in Ireland or discover the best place to watch the sunset in Santorini . We can help you see blockbuster cities like Paris and Rome from a new perspective, and point out small villages where you might be the only visitor.

Audley Travel Country Specialist Kerry-Ann

Start planning your tailor-made trip by contacting one of our Europe specialists

  • 617-223-4521 617-223-4390
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Where you can travel with us in Europe

Our specialists can help you plan your trip, individually focusing on your tastes and interests, to the destinations below.

Gondola under old bridge, Venice

Switzerland

Lavender fields of Abbaye de Sénaque, Provence

Netherlands

Austrian parliament building in Vienna

Czechia (Czech Republic)

Bridge over the Alzette River, Grund, Luxembourg City

Trip ideas in Europe

These itineraries will give you a starting point for what your trip could entail. They cover routes that we've found work particularly well and feature some of our favorite places to stay. Treat them just as inspiration, as each trip is created uniquely for you and there are many more options available.

Street overlooking Vesuvius, Pompeii

Southern Italy & Amalfi Coast tour

8 days from $7,555pp

St Mark's Square, Venice

Italy's art cities: Venice, Florence & Rome

10 days from $6,935pp

Cathedral Santa Maria del Fiore, Florence, Tuscany

Classic Italy tour: Rome, Venice, Florence & Tuscany

13 days from $13,085pp

Gondola under old bridge, Venice

Classic luxury Italy & Amalfi Coast tour

13 days from $22,615pp

Zermatt

Panoramic Switzerland & Italy

11 days from $8,155pp

Greek ruins, Agrigento

Classic Sicily tour

8 days from $8,055pp

Fira, Santorini

Romantic Italy & Greece

13 days from $15,160pp

Hydra, Greece

Athens & the Greek Islands tour

12 days from $9,895pp

Pasta making

Classic Italian family adventure: Venice, Florence & Rome

10 days from $10,115pp

Neuschwanstein Castle from above

Highlights of Germany self-drive

13 days from $4,250pp

Wine tasting

Highlights of Lisbon & Porto

7 days from $5,950pp

Notre-Dame Cathedral, Paris

Paris in depth

7 days from $6,095pp

Our expert guides to exploring Europe

Capturing our specialists’ extensive travel experience in Europe, these guides share inspiration, recommendations and our honest advice for how to enjoy the best of what the region can offer in the most authentic ways. From the wealth of options we describe, you can narrow down the choices and start to shape your own trip.

Plaza de Cibeles, Madrid

Best of Spain and Portugal

A private tour of the Alhambra, sipping wine in the sunny Douro River Valley, and watching a flamenco performance in Seville. Spain and Portugal specialist Talia picks some of her top experiences when visiting the Iberian Peninsula.

Geysir Geothermal Area, Golden Circle

Family vacations in Iceland

If your family loves outdoor adventure, animal encounters, and interactive museums, look no further than Iceland, says specialist Cara. She shares her guide to family travel to Iceland, from the best experiences and stays to how to get around.

10 min read

St Nikolaou monastery, Meteora

Best family vacations in Greece

Beaches, sun, and the enduring popularity of its mythology make Greece a great destination for family travel, especially for children inspired by the Percy Jackson stories. Mother and specialist Shannon talks about the best experiences for a family trip to Greece.

13 min read

Erechtheum, Athens

Exploring classical Greece: Five essential destinations

Explore the cradle of European culture with Greece specialist Abbey on this tour of five classical destinations, from the sun-bleached Parthenon in Athens to the sacred island of Delos, which the ancients believed to be the birthplace of Apollo and Artemis.

Edinburgh Castle

Edinburgh for first-time visitors

UK and Ireland specialist Jasmine offers an insider’s guide to the indispensable sights in Edinburgh, including visits to Edinburgh Castle, Arthur’s Seat and the Palace at Holyrood. She also suggests some ways to see a different side of the city.

Jura

How to avoid the crowds in Europe

People come from all over the world to see Europe’s many cities, landscapes and monuments. If you want to enjoy a trip without the crowds, our specialists suggest quieter, less-visited options from Scotland to Italy.

Eiffel Tower, Paris

A tale of three cities: London, Paris and Rome

How do you make the most out of Europe’s trio of classical cities when you’re pushed for time? We asked our England, France and Italy specialists to create their dream two-day itineraries for time-limited visitors

Michelangelo's 'David', Florence

Italy’s art cities: Venice, Florence and Rome

From classical Roman statues through Renaissance frescoes to modern installations, you can trace a complete history of Western art in Italy’s great cities. Specialist Kimberly talks about how to deal with the crowds as you take in these important works.

12 min read

Traditional fresh pasta, Bologna

Pintxos to praline brioche: 5 of Europe's signature dishes

From England to Italy, most European countries still retain strong regional identities, which they often express through food. Our specialists discuss the local signature dishes — regional and national — that they love around the continent.

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  • Europe Tours
  • Tour Operators

Top Tour Operators and Travel Agencies in Europe 2024/2025

Top Tour Operators and Travel Agencies in Europe. Below you will find 173 of the best tour operators and travel agencies in Europe offering in total 3826 tours and holidays through-out Europe. Combined they have received 6169 customer reviews and an average rating of 5 out of 5 stars. The top tour activities offered in Europe are: Sightseeing, attractions, culture and history, Adventure and sport & Boat tours, water sports and marine wildlife.

  • Tours in Europe
  • Europe Travel Guide

174 Tour Operators in Europe with 6,169 Reviews

Sakura Ltd

  • Address Guram Rcheulishvili 1, Tbilisi, Georgia
  • Response Rate 91%
  • Response Time 3 hours

TruTravels

  • Address 6 Fife Road, Kingston Upon Thames, Surrey,, London , England
  • Response Rate 84%
  • Response Time 2 hours

european tour travel companies

  • Best-in-Class Top 5% of companies
  • Excellent Service Top 10% of companies
  • Superior Service Top 15% of companies

Taste and Slow Italy

Taste and Slow Italy

  • Address via Borghetto, 30a, Fossato di Vico, Italy
  • Response Rate 99%

G Adventures

G Adventures

  • Address G Adventures Ltd, 60 Bastwick Street, London, England
  • Response Rate 90%
  • Response Time 1 hour

Expat Explore

Expat Explore

  • Address 10 Merryweather Place, London, England

Penguin Travel

Penguin Travel

  • Address 2, Sveta Gora str. , Sofia, Bulgaria
  • Response Rate 100%

Sunnova Travel

Sunnova Travel

  • Address Korkutreis Mah. Ilkiz Sok. 12/2 Sihhiye Cankaya, Ankara, Turkey
  • Response Rate 98%

Choose Balkans

Choose Balkans

  • Address Bulevardi Dëshmorët e Kombit Twin Towers, Tower 2, Tirana 1001, Albania, Tirana, Albania

Sicily Activities

Sicily Activities

  • Address Via Leonardo da Vinci 10, Taormina, Italy
  • Response Rate 79%

Costsaver

  • Address 33 Kern Road, Toronto, Canada
  • Response Rate 88%

Exodus Travels

Exodus Travels

  • Address Grange Mills, Weir Road, London, England
  • Response Rate 85%

Utracks

  • Address 1B Osiers Road, Wandsworth, London, England

Fez Travel

  • Address Hocapasa Mah. Tayahatun Sokak No:3 Sukran Han 3rd Floor, Sirkeci, Istanbul, Turkey
  • Response Rate 72%

CroisiEurope

CroisiEurope

  • Address 12 Rue De La Division Leclerc, Nedre Rhin, France
  • Response Rate 86%

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The 15 Best Tour Operators in 2022

These are the companies Travel + Leisure readers trust to provide them with travel expertise and memorable experiences.

european tour travel companies

Note: If you’re looking for our most recent recommendations, check out the 2023 list of our favorite tour operators .

When it comes to an itinerary, Travel + Leisure readers want more than a string of photo opportunities — and the right tour operator makes all the difference in creating a trip of a lifetime versus one that simply checks off a list of sights. This year, our readers were especially drawn to companies that utilize local expertise and experience to thoughtfully design trips that will entertain as well as inspire.

Every year for our World's Best Awards survey , T+L asks readers to weigh in on travel experiences around the globe — to share their opinions on the top hotels, resorts, cities, islands, cruise ships, spas, airlines, and more. Readers rated tour operators and safari outfitters based on their staff and guides, itineraries and destinations, activities, accommodations, food, and overall value.

The top picks were noted for their deep knowledge of destinations and guides who "go the extra mile." One reader who has been traveling for more than five decades said a trip with Classic Journeys (No. 2) was the "very best" they had experienced. Others noted attention to pandemic safety details, while one who went to Norway was charmed by a "wonderful surprise dinner in Bergen out on the water that was fantastic."

Tour operators that seamlessly navigated the logistics of a trip also came out on top. Quasar Expeditions (No. 9) was noted "for really planning out every detail" so that "all you have to do is show up and have a great time." Meanwhile, of TCS World Travel (No. 10), a guest said: "You never lift a finger and just spend your time actually exploring the destination." They even added that they "learned so much" along the way.

Among the five companies on this year's list that weren't on last year's were two women-only tour operators that cater to travelers of all ages. AdventureWomen (No. 14) has multiday tours designed by women from Bhutan to Yellowstone National Park, while Explorer Chick (No. 15) has everything from day trips — like glassblowing in Baltimore and cave rappelling in St. Louis — to full itineraries in Machu Picchu and the Galápagos. One reader said her Everest Base Camp trip with AdventureWomen was filled with "like-minded women" who "bonded so well," while another said she felt it was a "safe tour group for women."

No matter which tour they chose, readers were most taken by the people they met along the way, as one said of Trek Travel (No. 13): "By the end of the trip, a group of strangers felt like longtime friends." Find out which other companies round out the list of the best tour operators below.

1. DuVine Cycling + Adventure Co.

A tour with DuVine goes far beyond just riding a bike — it's a way to really see the character of a destination. Case in point: even those who say they're not necessarily cycling fans have been converted. That's part of what helped the tour operator — which runs trips in Europe, the U.S., Latin America, and Africa — skyrocket from No. 14 last year to this year's top spot. Its "top-notch biking equipment" and "challenging but doable itineraries" didn't hurt either. One reader was especially taken by a guide picking figs off of a local tree in Puglia for an extra energy boost during a tough climb, as well as another guide singing to the group after dinner. As another reader put it simply: "They exceed your expectations."

Score: 99.12

More information: duvine.com

2. Classic Journeys

Score: 99.04

More information: classicjourneys.com

3. Artisans of Leisure

Score: 98.38

More information: artisansofleisure.com

4. (tie) Black Tomato

Score: 98.33

More information: blacktomato.com

4. (tie) GeoEx

More information: geoex.com

4. (tie) Wilderness Travel

More information: wildernesstravel.com

7. Inside Japan Tours

Score: 98.14

More information: insidejapantours.com

8. Kensington Tours

Score: 98.03

More information: kensingtontours.com

9. Quasar Expeditions

Score: 97.84

More information: quasarex.com

10. TCS World Travel

Score: 97.78

More information: tcsworldtravel.com

11. Butterfield & Robinson

Score: 97.33

More information: butterfield.com

Score: 96.95

More information: tauck.com

13. Trek Travel

Score: 96.90

More information: trektravel.com

14. AdventureWomen

Score: 96.11

More information: adventurewomen.com

15. Explorer Chick

Score: 95.87

More information: explorerchick.com

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5 Top Tour Operators to Book on Your Next Trip to Europe

Keep the trip-planning process hassle-free with top-rated tour operators across the pond.

Guide explaining to tourists the Coliseum of Rome

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A reputable tour operator can help minimize headaches and maximize value.

Europe offers a treasure trove of museums, archeological sites and historic monuments. But, unless you're an art historian or medieval scholar, in order to fully appreciate these cherished attractions – and make the most of your limited vacation time – you'll want to book day tours with local tour operators. Reserving tours with a reputable tour company can ensure a richer (and more stress-free) experience, especially when traveling with kids in tow. Plus, booking reservations with a trusted guide far in advance can not only ensure availability but can also help you secure discounts and maximize savings. Here's who to go with on your next trip across the pond.

Fat Tire Tours

This English-speaking, British-headquartered tour operator has branches in Paris, Berlin, Barcelona and London, and offers 'skip the line' tours for major tourist attractions as well as unique city tours by bike. Opting for the latter and exploring iconic sights such as the Eiffel Tower  and the Tuileries Gardens from behind handlebars holds more appeal for kids than walking and makes for a more memorable and pleasant experience. Apart from benefitting from a knowledgeable guide as you navigate the city by bike, you'll also have the added element of keeping teens and preteens enthralled. Book a Fat Tire Tour online in advance of your trip, as the operator is very popular, but also look for deals offered by the company after your tour. There are often discounts available for booking second tours, and given the variety of offerings in each city, families could easily spend another day exploring with the Fat Tire crew.

Overome  

Focused solely on the Eternal City , Overome is a highly specialized tour company that offers small group and private tours at major Roman sites, such as the Vatican and Colosseum. While Overome primarily covers the can't-miss points of interest across Rome, their greatest strength lies in their tour guides. Their reputable guides are known for their enthusiasm and friendly demeanors, which help make it easy for families to unwind and enjoy in-depth tours of the Colosseum and the Roman Forum, without hordes of tourists at their side during prime visiting seasons. In a city known for crushing crowds at tourist attractions, having a guided tour with a small group can easily transform your trip from stressful and hassle-prone to headache-free.

Viator tours are offered in multiple countries across Europe and beyond, making this tour company the most expansive on this list. Travelers booking a tour through Viator can look forward to a range of offerings from daytrips from Paris to Normandy or Mont Saint-Michel to tours of Belgian Christmas markets to walks through Turkish bazaars . How does Viator offer such an extensive list of tours? They act as a middleman, pairing travelers in need of tours with local tour operations in European cities. First, travelers book the tour of their choice through Viator. Then, a subsequent email confirmation lists the local meeting point for the tour and includes information on the local tour company used. While Viator users do have to deal with two companies rather than one, they can count on the process to be streamlined and user-friendly. Best of all, Viator rigorously vets their local operators, so travelers don't have to worry about whether they're in good hands.

Walks of Italy

With tours offered in Venice, Rome, Florence, Pompeii, Tuscany, Milan and the Almalfi Coast, Walks of Italy is a standout pick for specialty tours across Italy. The company is known to tap visitors into the local culture with treks to off-the-beaten-path sites and hidden gems across the country. In other words, after you've seen the major landmarks, or think you know all there is to know about an Italian destination, take a Walks of Italy tour to discover lesser-known places. Their Rome as a Local Tour takes visitors across the city and into the suburbs to hit all the attractions guidebooks tend to gloss over, from chariot tracks on the Appian Way to aqueducts to the secret keyhole to St. Peter's Basilica. As your Walks of Italy tour guide takes you to less-trodden local points of interest, you're bound to feel more like an insider than a tourist.

Brit Movie Tours

Offering a fun way to explore London and the United Kingdom, Brit Movie Tours specializes – as you may have guessed – in movie locations for fans of series shown on both the big and small screen. Families will be most interested in their Harry Potter tour, which takes fans across the capital for three hours via motor coach to locations such as Kings Cross station and 12 Grimmauld Place, but there are also tours for fans of Doctor Who, the Beatles, Sherlock and more. Tours range in size, so look closely at tour descriptions. Also, consider private tours if a top priority is exploring top locations without heavy crowds.

Before You Book

All the tour operators on this list specialize in half-day and full-day tours in major European cities and all companies offer both small and large group tour sizes, ranging in price from approximately 30-200 euros per person. When possible, book your reservations in advance and opt for a small group size of 10 or fewer participants for the most value.

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The 10 Best Group Travel Tour Companies for 2023

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For those truly epic, once-in-a-lifetime destinations, you want to leave your itinerary to the experts. Whether your dream is to see the Big Five on an African Safari, trek tall mountains, explore European cities, or something even wilder, a group tour is the easiest way to do it.

However, picking the wrong group tour company is the quickest way to ruin your trip. Make sure you choose a tour company that aligns with your goals and travel styles. Do you want an intimate group tour or do you prefer to make lots of new friends in a big group? Does the price line up with what you like (luxury vs. budget)? Is the itinerary going to all the places you want to see? 

We’ve done the research and found the very best group travel tour companies for 2023 for every type of traveler.

Best Overall Group Travel: Exodus Travels

Images of nature around the mountains and lakes of Slovenia as seen on the Exodus Travels' Lakes and Mountains of Slovenia walking tour

With trips on every continent, Exodus Travels covers anywhere on this planet that you could possibly want to go, from popular destinations like the Amalfi Coast to well off-the-beaten path adventures like Tajikistan. This award-winning group travel company boasts thousands of repeat customers who sign up for trips year after year (97% of past participants would recommend Exodus Travels to a friend). 

These small group tours operate with only around 12-16 people, and always feature experienced local leaders who can give you a unique insight into your destination. Exodus Travels caters to any type of travel style, including trips broken down by type of activity (think walking, cycling, multi-adventure, winter, or cultural) as well as type of traveler (family, age group, etc.). There are curated collections (coastal, “away from it all”, European wilderness, and trips of a lifetime) to inspire you, as well as self-guided options for when you want all the benefits of a group tour planner without the actual group. Looking for that special safari? Exodus Travels just partners with the African Wildlife Foundation to create carefully curated luxury adventures that go above and beyond the standard safari. 

Exodus Travels tours work for almost any budget, with options that range from affordable to premium. 

Top Trip: Explore under-the-radar Europe by foot on Exodus Travels’ Lakes & Mountains of Slovenia walking tour .

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Best Adventure Group Travel: World Expeditions

Groups of hikers walking and camping around the mountains of Kilimanjaro with World Expeditions

World Expeditions has been taking adventurous travelers to remote locations all over the world ever since its first group trek through Nepal in 1975. Today, World Expeditions offers active itineraries on every continent. Intrepid travelers can opt for trips themed around mountaineering, rafting, cycling, hiking, and more. 

World Expeditions aims to leave communities and places where they operate tours better than they found them. Trips are created using the company’s Thoughtful Travel Charter as a guideline, which emphasizes respect for the environment, sustainability, having a positive impact on local communities, protecting wildlife, and more. 

World Expeditions’ trips are capped at just 16 people to provide a good experience for participants, and there are no single supplements for solo travelers willing to share a room with someone of the same gender. 

Top Trip: Summit Africa’s tallest mountain on a fully-supported trek up Kilimanjaro on World Expeditions’ eight day trip up the beautiful Lemosho Route . 

Best Budget Group Travel: G Adventures 

People visiting famous sites around China with the G Adventures' China Express group travel tour

For travelers on a budget, G Adventures offers cheap group tours that make dream destinations accessible to nearly anyone. (Think: sailing the Galapagos for just $1,124 , criss-crossing India’s Golden Triangle for $559 , or spending 8 days in Bali for less than $800.)

G Adventures is one of the best tour companies for solo travelers as well, as most trips don’t have a single-supplement. You can choose to share a room with another G Adventures solo traveler, or pay extra to have your own space.

G Adventures keeps costs down by opting for cheaper hotels and local meals, and making certain activities optional (for an additional cost). Pick your travel style—options range from “basic” to more luxe tours run in partnership with National Geographic. Family tours, local living tours (featuring homestays), and wellness-focused tours are also available. 

Top Trip: G Adventures’ China Express trip is a great way to see the highlights of China if you’re short on both time and budget. 

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Best Educational Group Tours: EF Go Ahead Tours

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When you really want to learn about a destination, consider a group trip with EF Go Ahead Tours . EF is the world’s largest private education company, and the Go Ahead Tours arm capitalizes on the company’s relationships with local educators, historians, and tour guides to create group trips that take you deep into a destination. 

These small group tours generally cap at 38 travelers, and feature unique educational experiences. For a bucket list trip, EF Go Ahead Tour’s special event tours are particularly enticing, as they offer behind-the-scenes access to tough-to-plan trips like Oktoberfest in Munich or Cherry Blossom season in Japan. 

Intimidated by solo travel? EF Go Ahead Tours is a great option for solo travelers, since it offers designated trips for solo travelers , where everyone is traveling alone, making it less intimidating.  

Top Trip: Bring the tastes of Italy home with you on EF Go Ahead Tours’ Food & Wine: Piedmont & Tuscany tour (operated in partnership with America’s Test Kitchen), where you’ll learn how to make local dishes. 

Best Responsible Group Travel: Intrepid Travel

Shots from around Uganda's Bwindi Impenetrable Forest and accommodations provided by Intrepid Travel's Premium Uganda & Rwanda trip

Looking for a responsible group travel operator that focuses on bettering the communities and destinations they visit? Intrepid Travel is the world’s largest travel B Corporation, a certification for companies doing good. 

Intrepid Travel’s tours focus on sustainability, diversity, inclusion, and sustaining communities. The company has its own charity, The Intrepid Foundation , which has donated over 7 million dollars to over 130 community organizations. 

Intrepid Travel’s small group tours attract a wide range of travelers, but they are especially great for younger travelers, as they have a large number of trips designed for people aged 18-29 . (Other trips, including family-focused trips, are geared toward any age.)

Top Trip: Experience unforgettable wildlife encounters on Intrepid Travel’s Premium Uganda & Rwanda trip which includes time with the mountain gorillas of Uganda’s Bwindi Impenetrable Forest. 

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Best Private Group Travel: Kensington Tours

Aerial shots of various islands and coastlines around the Croatia and Dalmation Islands and shot of sailboat belonging to Kensington Tours

Whether your group consists of just two people or involves taking the entire extended family, Kensington Tours will take all the hassle of planning out of the equation. This private group operator creates personalized trips and itineraries tailored to your preferences, while their experts handle all the logistics and bookings. 

Plans are entirely flexible, and can even be changed while on the trip on a whim. Need some inspiration? Browse Kensington Tours’ travel ideas , to get some ideas for your next adventure. 

Top Trip: Sail around the stunning shores of Croatia and the Dalmation Islands on a private luxury catamaran on Kensington Tours’ fully customizable tour . 

Best Polar Group Travel: Chimu Adventures

Shots of the interior and exterior of the Ocean Adventurer ship and shots of nature around Antarctica as seen on the Chimu Adventures' Antarctica Fly Cruise

Whether you’re headed north to the Artic or south to Antarctica, Chimu Adventures has the perfect polar group trip for you. Chimu Adventures has some of the most variety for polar trips, with options to fly, cruise, or a combination of both to get to your destination.

For an ultra-unique Antarctica trip, Chimu Adventures offers cruises departing from Australia or New Zealand (most Antarctica trips depart from Argentina). Can’t stay long? Book one of Chimu Adventures’ scenic flights to Antarctica , which fly as far as the south pole in one spectacular 16-hour day.

Chimu Adventures is one of the cheapest group trips to Antarctica, with rates starting under $5,000.

Top Trip: If you’re pressed for time (or simply don’t have the stomach for the Drake Passage), Chimu Adventures’ Antarctica Fly Cruise will get you to the ends of the earth quickly and smoothly.

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Best Group Tours for Solo Travelers: For the Love of Travel

Collage of images from the For the Love of Travel Lapland Tour

Group tours can be a great way to meet new people, but they can sometimes skew on the older age range. If you’re between 25-39 and a solo traveler looking to meet new people, you’ll love For the Love of Travel . All participants on the trips are between 25-39, and according to the company, 80 percent are solo travelers—so you’ll make friends fast. Hoping to meet someone who will be more than just a friend on your next trip? Trips include a balanced number of “gal and guy spots” to ensure an even balance of genders within groups (and of course, non-binary genders are always welcome). 

For the Love of Travel offers weeklong (or longer) international trips as well as shorter weekender trips to nearby destinations like Mexico or Denver—perfect for people without a lot of vacation time.

Top Trip: Sleep in a glass igloo under the Northern Lights, go sledding with huskies, and warm up in traditional saunas on For the Love of Travel’s Lapland tour , already booking dates for 2024.

Best Biking Tours Group Travel: DuVine Cycling

Collage of shots from DuVine's Holland Bike Tour

Biking through the rolling hills of Italy or across the mountain roads of Chile sounds like a dream, but the logistics seem daunting (especially if you don’t want to haul all your own stuff from point-to-point). Enter: DuVine Cycling , a luxury small group tour company that specializes in bike trips. 

With trips across Europe, Latin America, Africa, Asia, and the United States, DuVine Cycling is a cyclist’s dream. Choose from all-biking trips or mix things up with a cycle and sail bike tour or a multi-sport adventure —no matter what, everything is included, from luxury boutique accommodations to top-quality name brand bikes. 

Top Trip: DuVine’s Holland Bike Tour promises “tulips, windmills, beer, and cheese”—what more could you need?

Best Luxury Group Travel: Abercrombie & Kent

Collage of images from the different cities involved in the Abercrombie & Kent Wildlife Safari: Around the World by Private Jet trip

Abercrombie & Kent has been delighting discerning travelers since 1962. Today, they take travelers on unforgettable adventures across over 100 different countries and all seven continents. Although Abercrombie & Kent’s trips are pricey, they encompass once-in-a-lifetime experiences like private jet tours around the world or luxury chartered cruises .

There are trips designed for solo travelers and families , and the small group journeys max out at around 14-18 guests.

Top Trip: Swim with whale sharks in the Philippines, feed proboscis monkeys in Malaysia, and photograph wild tigers in India on Abercrombie & Kent’s Wildlife Safari: Around the World by Private Jet trip , already booking dates into 2024.

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Fans are following Taylor Swift to Europe after finding Eras Tour tickets less costly there

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LONDON (AP) — Thousands of ride-or-die Taylor Swift fans who missed out on her U.S. concert tour last year or didn't want to buy exorbitantly priced tickets to see her again found an out-of-the-way solution: Fly to Europe.

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LONDON (AP) — Thousands of ride-or-die Taylor Swift fans who missed out on her U.S. concert tour last year or didn’t want to buy exorbitantly priced tickets to see her again found an out-of-the-way solution: Fly to Europe.

The pop star is scheduled to kick off the 18-city Europe leg of her record-setting Eras Tour in Paris on Thursday, and planeloads of Swifties plan to follow Miss Americana across the pond in the coming weeks. The arena where Swift is appearing said Americans bought 20% of the tickets for her four sold-out shows. Stockholm, the tour’s next stop, expects about 10,000 concertgoers from the U.S.

A concert might sound like an odd raison d’etre for visiting a foreign country, especially when fans can watch the Eras Tour from home via the documentary now streaming on Disney+. Yet online travel company Expedia says continent-hopping by Swift’s devotees is part of a larger trend it dubbed “tour tourism” while observing a pattern that emerged during Beyoncé’s Renaissance world tour.

FILE - Taylor Swift performs at the Monumental stadium during her Eras Tour concert in Buenos Aires, Argentina, Nov. 9, 2023. Swift is scheduled to kick off the 18-city Europe leg of her record-setting Eras Tour on Thursday, May 9, 2024. (AP Photo/Natacha Pisarenko, File)

Some North American fans who plan to fly overseas for the Eras Tour said they justified the expense after noticing that tighter restrictions on ticket fees and resales in Europe made seeing Swift perform abroad no more costly — and potentially cheaper — than catching her closer to home.

“They said, ’Wait a minute, I can either spend $1,500 to go see my favorite artist in Miami, or I can take that $1,500 and buy a concert ticket, a round-trip plane ticket, and three nights in a hotel room,” Melanie Fish, an Expedia spokesperson and travel expert, said.

That was the experience of Jennifer Warren, 43, who lives in St. Catharines, a city in the Niagara region of Ontario. She and her 11-year-old son love Swift but had no luck scoring what she considered as decently priced tickets in the U.S. Undeterred, Warren and her husband decided to plan a European vacation around wherever she managed to get seats. It turned out to be Hamburg, Germany.

“You get out, you get to see the world, and you get to see your favorite artist or performer at the same time, so there are a lot of wins to it,” said Warren, who works as the director of research and innovation for a mutual insurance company.

The three VIP tickets she secured close to the stage — “I would call it brute-force dumb luck” — cost 600 euros ($646) each. Swift subsequently announced six November tour dates in Toronto, within driving distance of Warren’s home. “Absolute nose-bleed seats” already are going for 3,000 Canadian dollars ($2,194) on secondary resale sites like Viagogo, Warren said.

TOUR TOURISM: IS IT REALLY A THING?

Hard-core fans trailing their favorite singer or band on tour is not a new phenomenon. “Groupie” emerged in the late 1960s as a somewhat derogatory word for the ardent followers of rock bands. Deadheads took to the road in the 1970s to pursue the Grateful Dead from city to city.

More recently, music festivals like California’s Coachella and England’s Glastonbury, and concert residencies in Las Vegas by the likes of Elton John, Lady Gaga and Adele have attracted travelers to places they wouldn’t otherwise visit, Fish noted.

Travel and entertainment analysts have also spoken of a pent-up consumer demand for “experiences” over material objects since the coronavirus pandemic. Some think the willingness of music lovers to broaden their fandom horizons is part of the same mass cultural correction.

“It does seem like it’s more than a structural shift, maybe a personality transformation we all went through,” said Natalia Lechmanova, the chief economist for Mastercard in Europe.

As Swift hopscotches across Europe, Lechmanova expects restaurants and hotels to see the same boost that Mastercard observed within a 2.5-mile (4-kilometer) radius of concert venues in the U.S. cities she visited in 2023. The U.S. dollar’s strong value against the euro may also increase retail spending on apparel, memorabilia, beauty products and supplies for the friendship bracelets fans exchange as part of the Eras Tour experience, the economist said.

Former college roommates Lizzy Hale, 34, who lives in Los Angeles, and Mitch Goulding, 33, who lives in Austin, Texas, already had tickets to see the Eras Tour in L.A. last summer when they decided to try to get ones for Paris, London or Edinburgh, Scotland, too. They saw a Europe concert trip as a makeup for travel plans they had in May 2020 to celebrate Goulding’s birthday but had to cancel due to the pandemic.

Goulding managed to secure VIP tickets for one of Swift’s three Stockholm shows. He, Hale and two other friends scheduled a 10-day trip that also includes time in Amsterdam and Copenhagen.

“As people who enjoy traveling and enjoy music, if you can find an opportunity to combine the two, it’s really special,” said Hale, who is pregnant with her first child.

FOR STOCKHOLM, 120,000 SWIFTIES CAN’T BE WRONG

The local economic impact of what the zeitgeist has termed “Swiftonomics” and the “Swift lift” can be considerable. Airbnb reported Tuesday that searches on its platform for the U.K. cities where Swift is performing in June and August — Edinburgh, Liverpool, Cardiff and London — increased an average of 337% when tickets went on sale last summer.

Not to be outdone when it comes to trend-spotting, the property rentals company cited the demand as an example of “passion tourism,” or travel “driven by concerts, sports and other cultural events.”

In Stockholm, 120,000 out-of-towners from 130 countries — among them 10,000 from the U.S. — are expected to swarm Sweden’s capital this month, Stockholm Chamber of Commerce Chief Economist Carl Bergqvist said. Stockholm is the only Scandinavian city on Swift’s tour, and airlines added extra flights from nearby Denmark, Finland and Norway to bring people to the May 17-19 shows, he said.

In this image taken from video, fans pose with a life-size image of Taylor Swift at a club that plays only Swift's music in Gothenburg, Sweden, on Tuesday, April 30th, 2024. Swift is scheduled to kick off the 18-city Europe leg of her record-setting Eras Tour on Thursday, May 9, 2024. There will be three shows in Stockholm. (AP Photo/Chisato Tanaka)

The city’s 40,000 hotel rooms are sold out even though prices skyrocketed for the tour dates, Bergqvist said. Concert visitors are expected to pump around 500 million Swedish kroner, or over $46 million, into the local economy over the course of their stays, an estimate that does not include what they paid for Swift tickets or to get to Sweden, he said.

“So this is going to be huge for the tourism sector in Sweden and Stockholm in particular,” Bergqvist said.

Nightclubs, restaurants and bars are seizing the opportunity to cater to fans with Taylor Swift-themed events, such as karaoke, quizzes and after-concert dance parties.

Houston resident Caroline Matlock, 29, saw Swift more than a year ago when the Eras Tour came to the Texas city. Now she’s making more friendship bracelets and trying to learn a few words of Swedish as she prepares to see the 3 1/2-hour show in Stockholm. The idea of seeing Swift in Europe was her friend’s, and Matlock needed some persuading at first.

“I was like, ‘I only want to go if it’s a country I haven’t been to. I’ve seen Taylor Swift,’” she said.

Visiting the Swedish cities of Oslo and Gothenburg are on their itinerary. The concert is the last night of the trip and Matlock looks forward to interacting with Swifties from other countries: “Americans tend to have a very obsessive culture, especially Taylor Swift-related, so I’m curious if the crowd will be more toned-down.”

WILL TOUR TOURISM ENDURE AFTER ERAS?

It remains to be seen if the music tourism trend has legs as long and strong as Swift’s and Beyoncé’s, and if it will carry over to Billie Eilish, Usher and other artists with world tours scheduled next year. Expedia’s Fish thinks other big-name artists in Europe this summer will prove that booking a foreign trip around a concert is catching on.

Kat Morga, a travel consultant based in Nashville, isn’t so sure. Morga saw Swift perform in Nashville last year and helped two clients with school-aged children book European family vacations this summer that include seeing Swift in concert. But she thinks the difficulty of navigating ticket purchases through language barriers, currency conversions, international banking regulations and the risk of cancellations will limit the appeal of regular gig getaways.

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“I think this is an anomaly,” Morga said. “People aren’t typically going to build their $20,000 huge family vacation only because Taylor Swift is there. She’s the one-off. She’s special.”

Booking Holdings CEO Glenn Fogel, whose company operates Booking.com, priceline.com, agoda.com, Kayak and OpenTable, is even less enthusiastic about concert tours as a tourism instigator. The Swift Effect causes a “little blip” when the superstar goes to smaller destinations, but for the worldwide travel industry, “one star touring around does not make a difference,” he said.

“It may just shift it a little bit. A person was going to go to the Caribbean for a week vacation. Instead that person (says), ‘Let’s travel to the Taylor Swift thing,'” Fogel said. “It doesn’t increase it. It just moves it from here to there.”

AP journalists Colleen Barry in Milan, Chisato Tanaka in Stockholm, Anne D’Innocenzio in New York, David Koenig in Dallas, Thomas Adamson in Paris and Brian Melley in London contributed reporting.

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250+ Luxury Europe tour packages with 5,787 reviews

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The European wirl was amazing Garry was an amazing gide we had a great time absolutely loved it and the people we were travelling with were great everyone cooperated it was my trip of a lifetime
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Scandinavia Explorer Tour

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This trip gives a wide range of experiences. Different countries: Norway, Sweden, Finland. Different types of transport: boat, ship, train, tram, bus, bike. Different types of location: cities, countryside, lakes, fjords. Different activities: historical tours, hiking, scenic tours, sampling local foods, bob sledding. Our guide Sigrid, from Norway, was outstanding. Very organised, spoke many languages, excellent knowledge of the areas we were exploring and so much more, good sense of humour, caring, joined in and shared her passion of Scandanavia. There were so many wow moments on this trip especially the amazing views. The sight of the Fjords and tyke snow capped mounds will live on in my memory forever. 5am amazing experience.

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An excellent trip with an outstanding tour director (Sarah Rossi) and highly skilled bus driver (Bruno). Plenty of option excursion choices along with very good included tours with knowledgeable local guides. The only down side were two of the hotels - Hotel Marinela, Sofia Bulgaria, and Mercure Belgrade Excelsior - that were in desperate need of refurbishment not to mention functioning air conditioning and bathroom cleaning. Otherwise, great trip.

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Good communication, excellent guides, easy access to paid sites. Loved the tour and would recommend
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Where to begin?! When I discovered EpikDrives, I knew this would be the perfect surprise trip for my husband. Initially the packages and trip seemed “to good to be true” but Stephan was quick to respond to my 1,000 questions. We didn’t find many reviews which made me nervous but booked regardless and ARE WE GLAD WE DID! This turned out to be one of the best trips we have ever taken. Planning of the trip and booking was seamless. Stephan was so helpful and prompt with responses throughout the entire process from start to finish. Once we arrived in Switzerland, Stephan was waiting at the hotel with our supercar on arrival. We were impressed with the ease of everything! We would get into the car each morning and essentially hit “go” on the GPS. Easy GPS guidance to follow along with designated stops for sightseeing, coffee if needed, and re-fueling. We also enjoyed the binder that accompanied with printed out information of the itinerary for each day and description of the different sites or mountain passes. I would certainly give EpikDrives and Stephan a 10+ if I could and we will definitely be taking another trip with them in the near future. Thank you, Stephan, for such an incredible experience!

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Spectacular Switzerland with Romantic Rhine 2024 Tour

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The experience to Scandinavia was exceptional and we highly recommend this tour. Even more so, we recommend that you try to book with Greg Colgin. He made the trip so much more enjoyable with his positive and upbeat demeaner each day and a true passion for taking care of everyone. Our group enjoyed him so much that we are considering a reunion tour with him on another Insight vacation.

Highlights of Europe (Classic, Summer, Start Amsterdam, End Paris, 14 Days) Tour

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Balkan Discovery: 12-Day Cultural Expedition Tour

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Excellent tour. I was made to feel special right from the go, as I received a very warm welcome. I learnt so much of the history of the Balkans and was introduced to places I had never heard of. The restaurant choices choices were wonderful. I learnt to eat and appreciate local food All guides were amazing but I loved Viktor in North Macedonia because of his friendly and quiet personality. Mike was amazing as a tour leader, who made sure everything was up to standard . He also checked that I was having a great experience. Ivan our drive is one of the best. To Tiana and Ivan the photographers who accompanied us, thank you for ensuring I had the best time. Your photographs and videos are very special. My highlights, way to many to mention but Kotor, Postajne caves, Tirana, Skopje and Sarajeva were some but for different reasons. Would I book Balkland again definitely. The experience is what counts and I really learnt to appreciate the varied countries and gained a small insight into their beauty and history.

Grand Danube Cruise 2024 Tour

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What people love about Luxury Tours in Europe

Hi... Home too soon and reflecting on how great our trip with Intrepid was. We usually make our own arrangements when we travel. Though older, we do NOT enjoy the big bus experience. However, as we slip into our 70s, it's tougher to arrange all complexities of a trip. Since we are explorers at heart, we thought we'd try a small group trip. So...signed onto Scandinavia Explorer with Intrepid. How wonderful to be so independent yet not have to make all the arrangements. Hrvoje, our guide, was a walking encyclopedia about the sites and both fun and informative. And enjoyed meeting an Aussie lady to share our experiences. A very relaxed sort of trip. We will book another. So 5 stars!!! A little disappointed about the bike ride cancellation, but soon realized that street construction and other circumstances were the cause. One tip, however. On the small cruise part of our trip, we ended up in separate rooms. Not our guide's fault (he was the best), but perhaps with prior forewarning, we could've paid a little supplement to be in the same room even with separate single beds. We've been all around the world yet found ourselves wide-eyed with discoveries on this trip. Small trips like this allow one to meet the locals, too. Can't believe it's over. Although memories aren't. Thank you. What a charming almost fairy tale intro to Norway, Sweden, and Finland! Tom and Sherry Miller from U.S.A.

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